With Covid-19 quarantine, we've all been desperate to find fun activities to do at home. Diamond painting (or Diamond Dots) is fun, addicting, fulfilling, and kid-friendly. Fans of perler beads will love diamond painting!
What is Diamond Painting?
So what the heck is diamond painting?? No, they're not actual diamonds, and there's no paint involved. Diamond paintings are mosaics made up of tiny resin beads called drills (the "diamonds").
Diamond paintings are actually a lot like perler beads (read more about perler beads here). It's kind of a cross between a paint by numbers or a cross stitch. Your diamond painting is done of a canvas covered in a sticky adhesive with a pattern printed on it that tells you where to place each drill (resin bead). The results can be absolutely stunning! I love the shimmery, glittery finish of diamond paintings.
The process of diamond painting itself is very simple, but also takes patience and time. The "diamond" drills of your painting are placed with a pencil-like wand or applicator (There are a variety of type ) onto a preprinted/preglued canvas.
What You Need to Know Before You Start Diamond Painting
Diamond painting, like many other crafts or hobbies, has a unique lingo. Here are a few of the different terms you'll run into while searching for your first diamond painting project:
Round Drill - Round shaped drills (resin "diamond" beads)
Square Drill - Square shaped drills (resin "diamond" beads)
Full Drill - The image of the diamond painting is fully comprised of drills (resin "diamond" beads) Pictured above is a full drill diamond painting.
Partial Drill - The image of the diamond painting is only partially covered in drills. Don't be put off by this like I was at first. Partial drill diamond painting are gorgeous! Instead of a full on mosaic like with full drill, in partial drill diamond paintings, the beads are used to create dramatic and beautiful depth and accent to an image or background. Partial drill diamond paintings done right seriously look like they're jumping off the canvas!
Size Matters with Diamond Painting!
With diamond painting, size definitely matters! The resolution of a picture makes all the difference in the world with diamond painting. I was super disappointed in my first few diamond paintings because I didn't know what to buy. The projects I completed weren't nearly like the website I bought them from. Turns out, it was because the website showed the picture the diamond painting pattern was based on instead of the finished product. It was a frustrating lesson, but I learned that when buying a diamond painting, whenever possible, look for a picture of the finished product.
Remember, diamond paintings are mosaics made up of tiny beads. Mosaics are meant to be viewed from afar. Because of this, the larger the image, the more details will show in the finished diamond painting. The smaller the picture, the less detail you'll see in your diamond painting. That's not to say you can't take on small diamond painting projects. There are some really cute small diamond paintings out there. BUT don't expect a detailed diamond painting to work well on a small scale. Choose a small diamond painting project with very little detail.
Above are a few examples of small diamond painting projects that work.
Diamond Painting Supplies
The number 1 must-have thing I've discovered for a fun and successful diamond painting experience is a light board. I did several diamond painting kits before I heard about light boards, and I'll tell you, my eyes hurt! Eye strain is a huge problem with diamond painting, especially if you have an overactive drive to complete a project quickly, like I do. It takes many hours to complete all but very small projects. A light board is a game changer. All those little numbers, letters, and symbols marking your pattern are hard to see. (I know because I completed several diamond paintings before I discovered light boards. Believe me, a good light board makes all the difference in the world!)
There are a few handy tools that you want for diamond painting.
A good wand/applicator for placing drills. There's usually one in every kit, but after trying different ones, you'll find a favorite. There are single drill wands (which come with your diamond painting) or ones that allow you to place a few or several in a row.
Wax is used to make the drills (diamond beads) stick to the applicator. The glue on the canvas is stickier than the wax, so the drills come off the applicator when placed on the canvas. It's really just a matter of rewaxing the applicator and placing each drill until you're done.
You'll also want some kind of storage for your diamond painting drills. The paintings usually come with a few small storage bags, but I prefer little storage bins like these from Amazon.
Where to Buy Diamond Painting Kits
Amazon has a lot of great diamond painting options, as do most craft stores (where you can buy the name brand Diamond Dotz). The site I buy most often from is EveryDayDeals.com. They have a MUCH bigger variety to choose from. Their products aren't quite as good quality as Diamond Dotz, but if you're burning through diamond painting projects like my family, it's a great option to save money.
Hope you have fun diamond painting! Here are a few resources to get you started:
I really enjoyed this helpful How-To Diamond Painting Article
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I'm a mom in Fairfield, CA, overcoming mental illness and crazy health problems to pull my family out of poverty and live my dreams as an author.
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